Global motorsport has been plunged into chaos, with coronavirus causing almost every competition to be postponed or cancelled.
However, BMW Motorsport is not letting its roster of drivers spend the next few weeks with their feet up.
Instead, the German company will be fielding 10 drivers in various esports races. It has taken BMW to rebrand Saturday 21st March as ‘Super Sim Saturday’.
A virtual Green Hell
BMW Motorsport drivers from various racing disciplines will be split across three specific virtual competitions. All of this will be done from the comfort of the homes of the respective drivers.
Jens Klingmann, Martin Tomczyk, Dan Harper, and Neil Verhagen will all take part in the inaugural Nürburgring Endurance Series race. A four hour around an online replica of the fearsome Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit will be contested by two virtual BMW Z4 GT4s.
The Nürburgring race will be broadcast live on the VLN website, starting at 12 noon GMT.
Online endurance racing is here
On the other side of a virtual Atlantic Ocean, the IMSA Super Sebring race will take the place of the postponed Sebring 12 Hours.
BMW will field four virtual M8 GTE race cars in the 90 minute race, which begins at 18:30 GMT. Hosted on the iRacing platform, fans will be able to watch via the iRacing eSports Network on YouTube.
Representing BMW will be Bruno Spengler, Jesse Krohn, Colton Herta, and Nick Catsburg from BMW Team RLL. They will be joined by BMW M Customer Racing drivers Robby Foley, Tyler Cooke, and Sebastian Priaulx.
The race is on, again
BMW i Andretti Motorsport driver Maximilian Günther, who races in Formula E, will also be in action on Saturday. Günther will take part in the second edition of The Race’s All-Star Esports Battle at 19:00 GMT, along with BMW DTM driver Philipp Eng.
Last weekend, Günther came second in a race for motorsport professionals, finishing just behind Red Bull Racing Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen. Günther commented that “last weekend was my first taste of eSports racing, and I can say without any doubt that I am hungry for more.”
Sim racing esports is already a major component of BMW Motorsport’s activities. Many of BMW’s real-world drivers take part in BMW’s SIM 120 Cup and SIM M2 Racing Cup competitions. It means they should be ready for action this weekend.